Once again Dominic Thiem has confirmed himself as a constant danger also for the Fab Three (Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic). His success over Novak Djokovic, the fifth in the last seven direct matches against the Serbian (7-5 for Nole the total count), earned him the 300th ATP victory and the second consecutive final at the ATP Finals.
A game played well overall, but he seriously risked losing after missing four match points in the tiebreak of the second set and being 0-4 below in the third set. With his back to the wall, Thiem brought out his best tennis, shooting at every shot, fearlessly, and managed to take her home.
Dominic Thiem’s journey so far at the 2020 Nitto ATP Finals
During the press conference after his win over Novak Djokovic on Saturday, Dominic Thiem was asked if he saw himself as part of a ‘Fab 4’ of tennis, along with the trio of Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic.
“No of course not (a part of a ‘fab 4’). I mean if you compare especially the big titles I’m so far away,” Thiem said. “I have one Slam, one Masters 1000 and that’s it (laughs). It's a little bit less than the other three players”.
Dominic Thiem did mention, however, that he relishes the chance of facing the legendary trio. He also expressed his gratitude that Federer, Nadal and Djokovic were still playing, giving younger players such as himself multiple chances to lock horns with them.
“But I love to play against them," Thiem asserted. "As I said it's such a huge thing, every single match against them. We younger players can feel super happy that the three legends are still even around and we can compete with them and every match against them is a great opportunity."
Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl is confident that Dominic Thiem will achieve his goal of becoming World No. 1. "I know Dominic Thiem very well, I can say, because we met each other a few times since he is a Chelsea fan," Hasnhuttl said.
"I tried to invite him but it then the timing did not work. I'm always following his development, his game, amazing progress he has made in his game. I would really like to watch him live once here in England, in London but it's not possible at the moment.
There will come a time when I can see him play and hopefully then he is still a top player," Hasenhuttl added. "At the moment, he has the best package (game) to be No. 1 in the future. That is his main goal and I am sure that he can achieve it."